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End User Training Tips

By Liz Lagrotteria ·
I have to do some end-user training. I usually enjoy this but now I have to travel to a different company division to run the training and I'm anxious about how receptive the end-users will be.

My question is: How do you deal with a difficult end-users? For example, one that questions everything you say or one that insists on discussing off-topic issues?

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When training

by Tig2 In reply to End User Training Tips

I set ground rules. I let the group know that I expect us to begin and end on
time and that prior to lunch and prior to end of day we will have a QA session.
I ask every participant to jot down any questions they have and that bring them
up in the QA as they may find that they get the answer a bit further on as more
of the system is explained. During the actual exercise, I simply re-direct to my
lesson plan with something like "Great question! Let's be sure to talk about
that in QA."

By level setting expectations up front and then re-directing to task, everyone
knows what to expect.

Difficult end users, in my experience, don't know they are difficult. The
question-askers can bring their concerns to me at a time when I can answer
them- after the session or at the lunch break. In nine of ten cases, the person
was really just intimidated by the system and was fearful that changing would
impact their job performance. Off-topic issues go to the parking lot for later
resolution.

You'll be fine, Liz. Honest!

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Good Advice

by Liz Lagrotteria In reply to When training

Thanks for the reply. I never considered how they would feel about how it would affect their job. Interesting!

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Parking lot

by Jessie In reply to When training

One of those big flip charts is a great thing for questions that everybody wants to know the answer, but is not a part of your training. In my own job I frequently have to train teachers in the use of new classroom software. While I empathize with the ways they feel about the new program and the impact it's going to have on their job, mixed with the lack of support they're feeling from their administrators, it's not something they need to be spending training time discussing.

I use these phrases frequently; "Excellent question and we'll be getting to that in another portion of the training," "I understand this is a real issue for you all, but it's not within the scope of this training. Let's table that discussion for now and we'll brainstorm ways to approach it over break or lunch," "I'm not sure of the answer on that question, let's add it to the parking lot and be sure to leave me your email address so I can do some research when I get back to my office and I'll let you know."

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